“He’s definitely leaving” – Paul Merson blames Lampard for player’s decision to leave Chelsea

Paul Merson is convinced Antonio Rudiger will be leaving Chelsea at the end of the season and believes former Chelsea boss Frank Lampard should be blamed.

Rudiger struggled for game time under Lampard but has become an important player for the Blues under Thomas Tuchel.

“Chelsea are going to miss Antonio Rudiger when he goes because it will take £60-70m to replace him,” Merson told the Daily Star.

“Rudiger is definitely leaving. If he wanted to sign a new contract he would have done it by now. There’s no chance he stays now.

“But it’s not Thomas Tuchel’s fault. I think he made his mind up to go when Frank Lampard had him out of the team.

“And even though he’s been phenomenal since Tuchel brought him back in, and they won the Champions League, Rudiger hasn’t forgotten.

“Teams will be queuing round the block now to sign him, and someone will pay him a lorryload of money to join them.

“He’s been one of Chelsea’s two best players all season for me and he won’t be easy to replace – but Tuchel should already be thinking about who to go for.

“There just aren’t many world class centre backs around any more, and the ones who are will cost a small fortune.

“That’s why I don’t understand it when clubs let a player run down their contract like this. It makes no sense at all and it does my head in.”

About the Author

OTONY
I eat, sleep and live Chelsea.